How to get started, and achieve tasks, using Kubernetes

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Configuring Your Cloud Provider's Firewalls

Many cloud providers (e.g. Google Compute Engine) define firewalls that help prevent inadvertent exposure to the internet. When exposing a service to the external world, you may need to open up one or more ports in these firewalls to serve traffic. This document describes this process, as well as any provider specific details that may be necessary.

Google Compute Engine

When using a Service with spec.type: LoadBalancer, the firewall will be opened automatically. When using spec.type: NodePort, however, the firewall is not opened by default.

Google Compute Engine firewalls are documented elsewhere.

You can add a firewall with the gcloud command line tool:

$ gcloud compute firewall-rules create my-rule --allow=tcp:<port>

Note There is one important security note when using firewalls on Google Compute Engine:

as of Kubernetes v1.0.0, GCE firewalls are defined per-vm, rather than per-ip address. This means that when you open a firewall for a service’s ports, anything that serves on that port on that VM’s host IP address may potentially serve traffic. Note that this is not a problem for other Kubernetes services, as they listen on IP addresses that are different than the host node’s external IP address.


Consequently, please be careful when opening firewalls in Google Compute Engine or Google Container Engine. You may accidentally be exposing other services to the wilds of the internet.

This will be fixed in an upcoming release of Kubernetes.

Other cloud providers

Coming soon.